FAQs for the National Board Certification Program

Show All Answers | Hide All Answers

What is National Board Certification?

National Board Certification is a voluntary assessment program designed to identify, recognize and reward highly accomplished teachers and school counselors who meet the rigorous standards of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards for what teachers should know and be able to do.

Who is eligible to apply for National Board Certification?

Applicants who wish to pursue National Board Certification must:
  • Hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.
  • Have completed three years of successful teaching in one or more early childhood, elementary, middle, or secondary school(s) on a valid Provisional or Standard teaching certificate (emergency or intern certificates are not valid). Note that applicants for ECYA/School Counseling must have completed three years successfully serving as a school counselor in one or more early childhood, elementary, middle, or secondary school(s) to meet the employment eligibility prerequisite.
  • Hold a valid state teaching license.

How do I apply for National Board Certification?

To become an official candidate for National Board Certification, you must apply directly with the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards through the official website at www.nbpts.org.

What support can I expect to receive as a candidate for National Board Certification?

The Arizona K12 Center provides support to National Board Certification candidates through Pre-Candidacy classes, the National Board Summer Institute, and the facilitation of Small Group, monthly meetings within school districts and regions across the state. Each of these three layers of support is designed to foster meaningful communities of practice, and each layer involves the expertise of existing

National Board Certified Teachers that are trained by the Arizona K12 Center to provide customized support that is modified to meet each candidate’s needs through the different steps of their journey towards National Board Certification.

Pre-Candidacy Class: This class introduces participants to the National Board Standards and the process of National Board Certification. In this class, participants take stock of their own teaching practices and the results achieved in their classroom. This class is offered a few times per year in online and face-to-face environments and is a prerequisite for teachers receiving a scholarship from Arizona’s Master Teacher Program through the Arizona K12 Center.

National Board Summer Institute: This event is our kick-off event for new candidates pursuing National Board Certification. Learning activities at this event build on the knowledge gained from attending Pre-Candidacy class and allow candidates to form new relationships and establish a plan for success as they approach the beginning of their new school year. This three-day event is an energizing and motivating way to begin working on the National Board Certification process.

Coaching Saturdays: These events provide opportunities for candidates to receive on-going support as they move through their process, while developing personal applications and gaining new understandings of their practice. These events are typically held in Phoenix, Tucson, and/or Flagstaff, during which, candidates receive coaching support from existing National Board Certified Teachers and meet with other candidates pursuing their same certificate area. During our February and March events, video coaches and technology experts will also be on hand to help with video analysis and formatting needs. These days are designed to provide a supportive and engaging atmosphere where candidates will leave with a true sense of accomplishment.

National Board Workshops: These Friday-Sunday weekend events provide opportunities for candidates to receive on-going support as they move through their process, while developing personal applications and gaining new understandings of their practice. These events are typically held in Phoenix, Tucson, and/or Flagstaff, where candidates receive coaching support from existing National Board Certified Teachers and meet with other candidates pursuing their same certificate area. During each event, video coaches and technology experts will also be on hand to help with video analysis and formatting needs. These days are designed to provide a supportive and engaging atmosphere where candidates will leave with a true sense of accomplishment.

What is the fee for becoming a National Board Certification candidate?

The assessment fee for full candidacy is $1,900, and may include a $75 nonrefundable processing fee during each cycle. Each cycle, candidates can submit anywhere from 1-4 National Board Components; each component is $475.00.

To learn more about fees, click here to visit the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards website.

What financial assistance is available?

Funding is available for a limited number of scholarships through the Arizona Master Teacher Program and the Arizona K12 Center. Availability of scholarships is dependent on funding and eligibility requirements may change from year to year. All scholarships are awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please visit our Scholarship and Funding [program description] page for more information.
 
Teachers who are interested in pursuing this scholarship opportunity must complete a National Board Pre-Candidacy class [program description] prior to the scholarship being awarded. These classes are typically offered free of charge in school districts throughout the state as well as the Arizona K12 Center. Upon completion of a Pre-Candidacy class, a teacher is eligible to apply for the scholarship.
 

Who do I contact for an application for fee assistance through the Arizona K12 Center and the Master Teacher Program?

Interested participants who have completed a Pre-Candidacy class can complete an online scholarship application. Please visit our Scholarship and Funding [program description] page for more details about our scholarship program and access the application link. Applications will not be accepted prior to the completion of a Pre-Candidacy class. Contact Jessica Ress at info@azk12.org for more information.

How will I be notified if I am awarded a scholarship from the Arizona K12 Center?

Applications are accepted on a first-come first-serve basis. Once your application has been received and confirmation of Pre-Candidacy class completion has been verified, an Arizona K12 Center staff member will contact you via email. Once you have been notified that you will be receiving scholarship assistance, payment will be made directly to the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. 
 
The funding received through the Arizona K12 Center is considered a third party payment, therefore it is very important that you choose the "release name" elective (Question #38 on the candidate application) in order for the Arizona K12 Center to continue to view your status online. This option can also be selected by logging into your My Profile National Board account, clicking Letters and Agreements, and editing the option at the bottom of the page to release your name to third parties.
 
Once you have been approved for scholarship assistance, you can check the status of your payment by visiting www.nbpts.org and checking your candidate profile.

What will be expected of me if I receive fee assistance through the Arizona K12 Center?

Candidates who are eligible for and receive funding agree to:
  • Complete all components activities in the first year.
  • Attend the monthly small group meetings facilitated by a Candidate Support Provider (may miss up to two).
  • Attend three Coaching Saturdays.

What if I withdraw from the process after being funded?

Candidates who receive scholarship assistance from the Arizona K12 Center, but do not fulfill the candidate obligations listed in the Terms and Conditions portion of their scholarship application are obligated to repay any AZK12 monies paid on their behalf. Scholarship recipients who decide to withdraw from the process should follow the process and deadline established by NBPTS. Candidates who fail to withdraw by the deadline identified by NBPTS will be responsible for paying AZK12 monies paid on their behalf.

Click here to learn more about NBPTS withdrawal policies.

 

What steps must I take to withdraw?

Any candidate who chooses to withdraw from the process is responsible for notifying the NBPTS in writing by completing and submitting the online Withdrawal Form available from their online account in the My Profile section on the National Board website. If funding has been received through the Arizona K12 Center, the candidate must send verification of this formal withdrawal to the Arizona K12 Center prior to the portfolio deadline. Payments to the Arizona K12 Center can be made over the phone via credit card or can be sent via check to the Arizona K12 Center at 99 East Virginia, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ 85004.
 
For more information on withdrawal from the process, please visit NBPTS.

Do I need to register for small group meetings in my school district or regional area?

It is not necessary to register via the Arizona K12 Center website for small group meetings. Small group lists are generated by the Arizona K12 Center and schedules of all meetings are distributed at the National Board Summer Institute. Prior to the first scheduled small group meeting, you should expect to be contacted by your assigned Candidate Support Provider with the details of these meetings. It is important that candidates stay in close communication with their Candidate Support Provider, letting him/her know when you will not be able to participate. To find a small group near you, please contact Jessica Ress at info@azk12.org. It is important that candidates stay in close communication with their small group facilitator, letting him/her know when you will not be able to participate.

How do I register for National Board support events?

Should you elect to participate in any of our statewide Candidate Support Events (Pre-Candidacy class, Summer Institute, Coaching Saturdays, or National Board Workshops), you must register on or before each event deadline. To register for events, login to your AZK12 profile at: www.azk12.org. Once logged into your account, you can select “Event Registration” to register for individual events.

Do I need to set up an account on the Arizona K12 Center’s website?

First time users of the Arizona K12 Center registration system must first set up an account prior to registering for an event. There is no charge to establish an account. It is important that you keep this information accurate and current.
 
Every participant must have his or her own individual account. 

How is information disseminated and contact made with candidates?

All information is disseminated via email and the Arizona K12 Center website. All contacts are made via email. It is imperative that we have your current email address and that you check it with great frequency both during the school and summer months. The Arizona K12 Center is happy to send emails to multiple addresses if this meets your needs.